MINUTES OF THE WATER ORTON PARISH COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON THURSDAY 24TH JUNE AT 6.30PM

Present: Cllrs Robinson (Chairman), Hailstone, Freeman, Chown, B O’Meara, C O’Meara, Smith
Clerk – Daphne Robinson
Cllrs D. Reilly, J. Macdonald, CC Cllr. M Watson 4 members of the public

Public Forum

Public Forum

Mr. K. Smith – Church Warden, gave a comprehensive presentation on the demolition and rebuild of the churchyard wall on Old Church Road and removal of the two Lime trees.  He expressed his understanding that the loss of more trees was unfortunate but unavoidable.  A question was raised asking if replacing the trees had been considered.  Mr Smith replied that it had not, he said it could be considered, however the site for planting was limited.

A resident asked for the council to consider the installation of a cycle path in Water Orton.  He explained he had written to Craig Tracey MP and contacted WCC as to their plans for a cycle path from Water Orton to Coleshill, as none of the current proposals for cycle paths in Warwickshire come within ten miles of Water Orton.  Cllr Reilly stated that he had had tentative discussions with Curdworth Parish Council to consider opening a cycle path on the ash path.  This would require discussions with Severn Trent.  It was decided that the parish council should investigate the possibility of working with Curdworth PC on this issue.

  1. Chairman’s Remarks
    Cllr Robinson welcomed everyone to the first face to face meeting since February 2020.  He noted that the Water Orton in Bloom group had been replanting and that the village was looking colourful.  He reported that two new village caretakers had been employed.
  1. Apologies for absence and reasons given
    Cllrs Rees and Bevan – they believed they did not yet feel confident in attending face to face meetings as all lockdown restrictions had not been lifted.  Members accepted the reasons given.
  1. Declarations of Interests and requests for Dispensation
    None
  1. To elect a Vice Chairman for the forthcoming year
    Proposed by Cllr Hailstone, Seconded by Cllr Freeman and Resolved that Cllr B O’Meara continue as Vice Chairman.
  2.            Report From Police
    PC Bird had sent his apologies but had sent a report to the clerk.  Figures for the previous month were as follows:
    • 3 incidents of trespass at the old school. The police are still proactively patrolling the area and that of Attleboro Lane.
    • 5 incidents in relation to the playing field and the tennis courts. The police now have a plan of action.
    • 4 incidents at one of the local public houses and the police are monitoring along with licensing.
    • 1 suspicious incident of a male trying car doors along Attleboro Lane.
  1. To approve the minutes of the Annual Parish Council meeting held on 6th May 2021.
    Proposed by Cllr Freeman, Seconded by Cllr C O’Meara and Resolved to   accept the minutes as a true record.  Signed by the chairman.
  1. Clerk’s Report
    Mr Paul Bellis, handyman/groundsman for the parish council had submitted his resignation and would be leaving at the end of June.  He was thanked for his services over the last three years. Bookings for the pavilion were beginning to increase.  Coleshill Town Colts had confirmed that they wished to use the football pitch as their home ground for the 2021/22 season.  Broadband and the television had finally been installed at the pavilion.   There was no ariel as the television was for presentation purposes only.The agreement between WCC & WOPC for the memorial site had been completed.  A meeting between the police, residents of Openfield Croft, representatives of the tennis club and parish councillors had taken place to discuss the problems of large gatherings on the playing field. Anti-social behaviour through drinking and possible drug taking had become a major problem during the weekends.  It was agreed that the police would obtain one of the council’s CCTV cameras and fitted on one of the flood lights poles at the tennis club.  The police explained that a tasking system was now in place to ensure more patrols would be carried out to monitor the situation.A letter had been sent to 144 Coleshill Road asking for the removal of the tree cuttings left on the playing field.  Contracts for the land to be registered for Village Green status on Plank Lane had been exchanged between the developers and landowner.  Registration for Village Green status was now underway.
  1. To receive reports from Borough and County councillors.Cllr Macdonald confirmed that the licence for the memorial site had been completed.  Costs of fees had been waived by County Council.  Remaining funds from the memorial committee, £7783.32, would be transferred to the parish council account.  This money should cover the cost of landscaping.  Any overspend would be paid by the borough councillors.  A meeting with Network Rail, Craig Tracey and members of the Water Orton Community Action group had taken place.   Network rail assured the station would remain operational.  Extending the timetable would take 18 months, as this was the timescale for making timetable changes.  Network rail optional appraisal was:1. Demolish the building and provide access to the platforms.
    2. Make the outside structure of the building safe and make safe access to the platforms.
    3. Retain the facade.Planters had been put on the platform and planted up by WOIB.  This had been funded by Network Rail and WOCAG.Cllr Reilly reported residents on Attleboro Lane were experiencing problems with their properties due to vibration from Hs2 works.  NWBC were challenging the lawfulness on work Hs2 were carrying out.  Hs2 do not believe it is liable for property damage alleged to be caused by Hs2 work. Cllr Reilly had discussions with residents and agreed to consider employing a surveyor to establish if the construction work was the cause of the damage.  This would cost approx. £250 per property.  16 properties would equate to a total cost of £4000.  Cllr Reilly said that he and Cllr Macdonald had agreed to fund half the cost and asked if the parish council would be prepared to fund the balance.  The clerk advised that it was unlikely that the PC had powers to do this and would seek advice and report back at the next meeting.

    C Cllr Watson reported that there was a new mood at WCC towards NWBC as the local elections had been very good for North Warwickshire.  Cllr Watson spoke of the new bi-diversity on highways, allowing grasses and wild flowers to grow to encourage wildlife. 20’s plenty speed limit initiative and community funding now available for small, local community organisations.

    He is still working with highways towards getting the junction changes at Marsh Lane.  Awaiting a response from highways regarding a Speed Indicator Device being installed on Birmingham Road.

  1. To receive an update on the Neighbourhood Plan.
    The clerk read the report sent by Cllr Bevan giving an update on the progress of the Neighbourhood Plan.
  1. To receive an update from the maintenance committee including the Playground equipment
    Cllr Chown reported that he had caried out the monthly inspection on the play equipment and that there was nothing to report.  He highlighted the locking post by the old school needed to be reset into the ground.  The clerk would arrange this with the groundsmen.
  1. To receive a report from the Play Equipment Working Group
    Cllr Smith advised that there had been one meeting and he had also met with a representative from a company who specialise in project managing play equipment installation projects.
  1. To receive a report from the Water Orton in Bloom Group
    Cllr. B O’Meara reported that the group had met and approved a constitution and Terms of Reference.  Officers were elected.
    Cllr. B O’Meara – Chairman, Tonijane Harrison – Secretary, Daphne Robinson – Treasurer.
  2. Planning – To discuss and comment on the following planning applications:
    PAP/2021/0285 6 Openfield Croft – No objections raised.PAP/2021/0304 Hillcrest Kennels & Cattery Birmingham Road.
    After some discussion it was Proposed by Cllr. C O’Meara, Seconded by Cllr Smith and Resolved to object to the planning application.  Objections were based on the impact of increased traffic movement and the size of the structure.  The clerk would submit the objection to NWBC planning.
  3. To approve the maintenance committee bring design options for replacing the Bus Shelter on Birmingham Road to the council for consideration.
    Proposed by Cllr. B O’Meara, Seconded by Cllr. C O’Meara and Resolved. 
  1. To receive an update from the HR committee and retrospectively approve hiring a cleaner for the pavilion.
    Cllr B O’Meara advised that Kray Dewsbery and Daniel Burley, both residents of Water Orton have been employed as Village Caretakers.  The Clerk reported that the HR committee had decided to employ a cleaner for the pavilion.  It had been agreed by the committee that it would be more straightforward to keep the cleaning duties separate to the village caretaker roles. It was Proposed by Cllr. Hailstone, Seconded by Cllr. Smith and Resolved to retrospectively appoint a cleaner for the pavilion.
  1. To consider obtaining a piece of land for health and wellbeing.
    This was raised by Cllr B O’Meara.  It was agreed this could be considered at later date once land had been transferred for Village Green status.
  1. To approve the offer from Beaver Metals for the transfer of a piece of land to the parish council.
    Details had been circulated to members showing the parcel of land on Marsh Lane which Beaver Metals were offering to gift to the parish council.
    Proposed by Cllr B O’Meara, Seconded by Cllr Freeman and Resolved to accept the piece of land on Marsh Lane being gifted from Beaver Metals.
  1. Financial Matters
    a) To approve electronic and future invoice payments.
    Proposed by Cllr. B O’Meara, Seconded by Cllr. Smith and Resolved to approve electronic and future payments.  The chairman signed the invoices.b) To receive an update on finance matters.
    The clerk gave an update on financial matters and advised the internal audit had been carried out. The notice for the right for the public to inspect the un-audited accounts would be posted on the noticeboard and  council website.c)To approve Section 1 of the Annual Governance Statement 2020/21
    Proposed by Cllr Hailstone, Seconded by Cllr B O’Meara and Resolved.  The chairman and clerk/RFO signed the document.d) To approve Section 2 of the Accounting Statement 2020/21
    Proposed by Cllr Hailstone, Seconded  by Cllr Smith and Resolved. The Chairman signed the document.

The next meeting will be 29th July 2021 at The Pavilion.